Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Cheap Paleo Chocolate Cake Recipe- With Beets!- Nut Free, Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Grain Free, Coconut Free

I wanted to apologize for not posting so much the last little while- it's spring break over here so I've been taking advantage of that and trying to teach as many foraging classes as possible while kids are out of school, which means less time in front of the computer to write posts. (6 classes in the last 4 days alone, in 4 different cities. I'm exhausted!)
But, I made this cake and shared it on my personal Facebook wall and so many people asked me to share it, so exhausted or not, here it is!

My niece turned 1 year old and her mom asked me to make a birthday cake for her, but there were a few specifications for it: no refined sweetener, no grains (gluten free or otherwise), and healthy.
On top of that, I didn't want to make it very expensive, which this type of cake generally would be, typically using lots of honey and nut meal. On top of that, I didn't have coconut flour (which also is quite pricey) which these types of cakes generally use.
I decided to experiment with a cake recipe and hope I came up with something good.
Because I wasn't using anything solid like white sugar or nut meal but wanted the cake to solidify, I decided to use a whole boiled beet in the cake, something which sounds weird, I know, but there are lots of recipes out there putting beets in chocolate cake so I decided to give it a try.
Because honey is expensive and I can get dates cheaper than honey, I decided to try making the majority of the sweetness be from dates and beets, and only add honey as needed for that extra bit of sweetness.

The results of the experiment?
My husband, kids, and I all enjoyed it. Of those who attended the birthday party, the majority liked it a lot and wanted the recipe, but maybe a third of the people who tried it weren't fans.
Here's why- I think.
First off- it tastes healthy.
If you're expecting a cake that tastes exactly like plain ol' chocolate cake- you'll be disappointed.
Secondly, it is sweet enough, but not very sweet. Kind of like if you take a bite of 75% dark chocolate expecting milk chocolate the first thought running through your head will be "OMG this isn't sweet!" But if you go in expecting 75% chocolate, you will appreciate the mild sweetness and enjoy it.

That said, here's the recipe.

Cheap Paleo Chocolate Cake Recipe- With Beets!- Nut Free, Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Grain Free, Coconut Free

1 large boiled beet- peeled- 9.8 oz/280 grams
7 oz/200 grams pitted dates
3/4 cup cocoa
4 whole eggs+ 4 egg whites
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/3 c honey
1/2 cup potato or tapioca starch
3/4 teaspoon salt

1. Puree the beet with the dates in a food processor until as smooth as possible.

2. Add whole eggs and honey and puree some more.

3. Add the cocoa powder, starch, and salt and mix well.

4. Beat the egg whites until you have stiff peaks, add the lemon juice, and gently fold the beaten eggs into the cake batter.

5. Pour into a 9x9 and bake at 35 until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean, about 25-35 minutes.

6. I topped the cake with homemade walnut butter to make it more festive in a healthy way, and some other people had the idea to decorate it with sliced banana and watermelon.

Bon Apetite!

What is your favorite homemade healthy cake recipe? How do you try to keep the costs down, or do you not bother since its so hard to find a good, cheap recipe?
Have you ever made or heard of a cake containing beets before?
Does this look like a recipe you'd try?


  1. Do you think you could use canned beets in this recipe? Thanks

    1. I cant see why not, as long as theyre just plain beets, not with other ingredients like vinegar and sugar.

  2. How can it be nut free if it has walnut butter?

    1. The cake itself is nut free- the walnut butter I put on was totally optional. The person who requested the cake didnt need nut free, but the cake itself was.

  3. I'm not sure I would be a fan of healthy cake but I love your creativity and ability to produce such gorgeous recipes despite so many constraints. :)


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